WTO/GATT Research
By Jeanne Rehberg
Jeanne Rehberg is Reference Librarian for International and Foreign Law at New York University School of Law Library where she is responsible for the WTO, United Nations, European Union, and United States documents collections. She is the co-editor with Radu D. Popa of Accidental Tourist on the New Frontier: An Introductory Guide to Global Legal Research (Fred B. Rothman, 1998), and author of several chapters in the book. She holds J.D., M.L.S., and M.A. (French) degrees.
Published September 3, 2001, revised November 13, 2002

The World Trade Organization website is a dynamic, responsive and transparent research tool.  As is typical of most IGO websites, however, the WTO official documents online are limited to recent years. At least for now, comprehensive research requires a mixture of print, microfiche, and electronic formats.
This guide lists the essential sources for researching the current WTO system and the predecessor system under the 1947 General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade. It does not attempt to list all the worthy secondary sources in this area. The guide cites selected U.S. materials. Of course, national sources for other WTO member states will also be relevant. The guide is organized as follows:
I. Secondary Sources 
A. Other Research Guides 
B. Selected Books 
C. Locating Other Books and Articles 
D. Websites 
E. News Sources 
F. Statistics 
G. Terminology 
II. GATT/WTO Legal Instruments 
A. Official Sources and Citation 
B. Selected Other Sources 
C. Negotiation, Interpretative Documents, Implementation 
1. Compiled History of the Negotiations and Other Books 
2. Official Documents 
3. U.S. Implementation 
4. Ongoing Negotiations 
III. Schedules on Tariffs and Services 
IV. Official Documents 
A. Guides to the Documentation System 
B. BISD (Basic Instruments and Selected Documents) 
C. GATT/WTO Documents (Microfiche) 
D. WTO Documents Online 
V. Beyond the GATT: GATS, TRIPS, TRIMS, etc. 
VI. Dispute Settlement 
A. Dispute Settlement Rules 
B. Official Sources and Citation of Reports 
C. Other Sources of Reports 
D. Written Submissions to the Panel or Appellate Body and Other Papers 
E. Selected Secondary Sources 
VII. Trade Policy Review Mechanism 
VIII. U.S. Practice of International Trade Law 
I. Secondary Sources
Start here for research guides, quick facts, news, statistics, background, scholarly analysis, and citations to official documents and dispute settlement reports.
A. Other Research Guides
·   Introduction to International Law Research. Jean Davis and Victoria Szymczak.
·   ASIL American Society of International Law Guides
>International Economic Law
>Private International Law
>International Commercial Arbitration
·   From the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade to the World Trade Organization: An Overview for Georgetown University Law Center Students. Originally prepared by Ellen Schaffer. Completely revised and expanded by the International and Foreign Law Department. Updated December 2000.
B. Selected Books
·   The EU, the WTO, and the NAFTA: Towards a Common Law of International Trade? Ed. J.H.H. Weiler. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, 2000.
·   GATT Analytical Index: Guide to GATT Law and Practice. Updated 6th ed. Geneva: WTO and Bernan Press, 1995. Two vols. Up-to-date to January 1, 1995. Also available on a CDROM co-published by WTO and Bernan Press.
·   International Business Transactions in a Nutshell. 6th ed. Ralph H. Folsom, Michael Wallace Gordon, and John A. Spanogle, Jr. St. Paul, Minn.: West, 2000.
·   International Trade and Investment in a Nutshell. 2d ed. Ralph H. Folsom, Michael Wallace Gordon, and John A. Spanogle, Jr. St. Paul, Minn.: West, 2000.
·   Lawmaking under the Trade Constitution: A Study in Legislating by the World Trade Organization. Gail E. Evans. Studies in Transnational Economic Law, vol. 14. The Hague; Boston: Kluwer Law International, 2000.
·   The New Rules of Global Trade: A Guide to the World Trade Organization. Jeffrey S. Thomas and Michael A. Meyer. Scarborough, Ontario: Carswell, Thompson Canada, Ltd., 1997.
Contains a brief history of the WTO, a description of its structure and operation, an article-by-article description of the agreements, and a discussion of legal and policy issues facing the organization.
·   The Political Economy of the World Trading System: From GATT to WTO. Bernard M. Hoekman and Michel M. Kostecki. 2nd ed. Oxford; New York: Oxford University Press, forthcoming 2001.
·   The Regulation of International Trade. 2d ed. Michael J. Trebilcock and Robert Howse. London; New York: Routledge, 1999.
Introduces the theory, rules and institutions that govern international trade and related areas, including development, investment, intellectual property, the environment, labor, and competition policy.
·   Tariff Negotiations and Renegotiations under the GATT and the WTO: Procedures and Practices. Anwarul Hoda. Cambridge: Cambridge University, forthcoming.
·   World Trade Law: The GATT-WTO System, Regional Arrangements, and U.S. Law. Raj Bhala and Kevin Kennedy. Charlottesville, Va.: LEXIS Law Publishing, 1998. With supplements.
·   The World Trade Organization: Constitution and Jurisprudence. John H. Jackson. London: Royal Institute of International Affairs, 1998.
·   The World Trading System: Law and Policy of International Economic Relations. 2d ed. John H. Jackson. Cambridge, Mass.; London: MIT Press, 1997.
C. Locating Other Books and Articles
Use library catalogs, mega-catalogs such as RLIN and OCLC, and periodical indexes and full-text periodical sources to identify other books and articles on your topic. If keyword searching does not prove adequate, try the following subject headings:
·   Antitrust law 
·   Competition, unfair 
·   Customs administration 
·   Developing countries--foreign economic relations 
·   Environmental law, international--economic aspects 
·   Financial services industry 
·   Foreign trade regulation 
·   Free trade 
·   General agreement on tariffs and trade 
·   Intellectual property 
·   International economic relations 
·   International trade 
·   International trade--environmental aspects 
·   Non-tariff trade barriers 
·   Services industries 
·   Tariff--law and legislation 
·   Uruguay Round 
·   World Trade Organization 
A current list of WTO publications is available on the WTO website. Click on Resources>On-line Bookshop.
The Journal of International Economic Law (Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1998-) regularly includes the "JIEL Book Survey," a list of new books on the WTO and related topics.
Retrospective bibliographies:
·   GATT Bibliography. Geneva: GATT Secretariat, 1954-71. Covers 1947/54-1970.
·   The World Trade Organization: Selective Bibliography. 2d rev. and updated ed. H.H.R. Van Hamel. The Hague: Peace Palace Library, 1999.
D. Websites
For news, treaties, case law, background documents, and links to other websites.
·   World Trade Organization
Main sections of the website are: 
o      The WTO: an introduction to the WTO and the world trading system 
o      WTO News: press releases, speeches, news archive, meeting calendar 
o      Trade Topics: background, documents and news on particular sectors of trade; dispute settlement reports; Trade Policy Review reports 
o      Resources: statistics, research, on-line bookshop, and interactive guides 
o      Documents: the agreements, Documents Online database, dispute settlement reports 
·   SICE Foreign Trade Information System of the OAS
Full-text of trade agreements between countries of the Western Hemisphere; dispute settlement documents and reports from the FTA, NAFTA, GATT 1947, and GATT 1994; and documents of selected commercial arbitration bodies.
·   Juris International
·   Cornell Law School Legal Information Institute: International Trade Law
·   Pace University School of Law Institute of International Commercial Law
·   International Chamber of Commerce
·   ICSID International Centre for the Settlement of Investment Disputes
·   UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD)
·   UN Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL)
·   Hague Conference on Private International Law
E. News Sources
·   To receive email news bulletins from the WTO, go to the WTO website and click on Register.
·   WTO News
Latest and archive news (1998-), press releases (1995-), speeches (1995-), and meeting schedules.
·   Annual Report. Geneva: WTO, 1996-. From 1998-, also available on the WTO website.
·   Focus, the WTO´s Newsletter. Geneva: Information and Media Relations Div. of the WTO, 1995-. From 1996-, also available on the WTO website.
·   International Trade Reporter: Current Reports. Washington, D.C.: BNA, 1984-. Also in WESTLAW (BNA-ITR), LEXIS-NEXIS (BNA;INTRAD), and on the web through BNA.
This weekly publication follows developments affecting the trade and international business policies of the U.S. and major U.S. trading partners. Covers laws, regulations, court decisions, treaties, customs arrangements, briefings by key government and industry officials, international business conferences, and new publications and studies, and reprints the text of selected documents.
·   Trade and Environment Bulletin. Geneva: Information and Media Relations Div. of the WTO, 1995-.
Issue TE/035 (Feb. 20, 2001) links to a list of working documents of the Committee on Trade and Environment since 1995.
F. Statistics
o      WTO Trade Statistics
Historical statistics, links to national and IGO statistical sources, and International Trade Statistics, which is also available on a CDROM co-published by WTO and Bernan.
o      Interactive Tariff and Trade DataWeb
G. Terminology
o      Trilingual Glossary: For the Use of WTO Translators. Geneva: WTO, 1997.
In English, French, and Spanish, the official languages of the WTO. 
The WTO webpages contain several glossaries on specialized topics. To locate them, click on Search from the WTO home page and type the word "glossary" in the search box.